Impeccable designer and trendsetter Tom Ford made headlines recently with his proclamation in a menswear magazine that “flip-flops and shorts in the city are never appropriate; shorts should only be worn on the tennis court or on the beach.”
I asked Doug Madar, a menswear expert who has been in the business for almost four decades and who currently works at the stunning new Brooks Brothers store at Phillips Place, to share his thoughts on that statement.
I wasn’t surprised that Madar adamantly agrees that flip-flops are not appropriate city attire, or that he was more forgiving on shorts for casual events (but never for work, even on the most casual of Fridays).
Madar filled me in on the basic well-dressed man’s wardrobe guidelines, and what the new trends are.
For teen boys, the must-have pieces are chinos in either khaki or British tan, worn with a short sleeve polo or long sleeved woven shirt, and a classic navy blazer with gold buttons.
Once in college, it’s time to add a suit, and Madar recommends poplin or seersucker for the summer. The trend now is a slimmer cut. The store carries a style called The Fitzgerald inspired by the retro “Mad Men” look that is more fitted with a flat front pant, and a narrower lapel. You can go even slimmer with the European look of the store’s Milano suits.
For grown men who are working, no matter what their age, they can also update their wardrobes with the slimmer cut suits as long as they have the right body type. For casual (not work) attire, polo shirts are a way men can express themselves in the summer because it’s all about bright colors – from shades of yellow, green and orange to even lavender and pink.